Sustainable Community Urban Farms Initiative

submission by raeextra
Sustainable Community Urban Farms Initiative

About Your Application

Organization(s) name(s):

Green Institute for Village Empowerment (GIVE) program at Tom Bradley Legacy Foundation at UCLA, L.A. Urban Farms, Union Rescue Mission, Union Church L.A.

Organization(s) website(s):

Organization(s) twitter handle(s):

Organization(s) facebook handle(s):

Describe Your Organization(s)

Non-profit organization

For-profit organization


Other (please specify below):

In one sentence, please describe what your organization does.


The Green Institute for Village Empowerment is an organization dedicated to the education and promotion of sustainable communities through education, information, research and initiatives that convert concepts to action.

In one to three sentences, please describe your proposal.


We seek to establish a solar-powered water conservation and urban vertical community farm pilot project and job training program at Union Church in downtown Little Tokyo. In partnership with LA Urban Farms, we will install 20 vertical garden tower planters at Union Church. We will also train job-ready, former Skidrow residents of Union Rescue Missions’ Job Development Program and Little Tokyo residents in the maintenance of the tower gardens and in growing profitable herbs and vegetables.

Where will you be working? Please be specific (e.g. Third Street Middle School; Boyle Heights; LA County).

Central LA

East LA

San Gabriel Valley

San Fernando Valley

South LA


South Bay

Antelope Valley

County of Los Angeles (countywide)

City of Los Angeles (citywide)


Other (please specify below):

(e.g. Third Street Middle School; Boyle Heights; LA County):

Union Church L.A. in Little Tokyo, 2 blocks from Skidrow; Central LA, LA County

How do you plan to use these resources to make change? (check all that apply)

Conduct research

Engage residents and stakeholders

Implement a pilot or new project

Expand a pilot or program

Mobilize for systems change

Advocate with policymakers and leaders

Implement and track policy

Other (please specify below):

How will your proposal improve the following “Live” metrics? (check all that apply)

Access to healthy food

Healthcare access

Exposure to air toxins

Number of households below the self-sufficiency index

Percent of imported water

Obesity rates

Housing affordability

Rates of homelessness

Walk/bike/transit score

Acres and miles of polluted waterways

Rates of mental illness

Prevalence of adverse childhood experiences (Dream Metric)

Percentage of LA communities that are resilient (Dream Metric)

Percentage of residents receiving coordinated healthcare services (Dream Metric)

Percentage of tree canopy cover (Dream Metric)

Describe in greater detail how you will make LA the healthiest place to live.


As water and land are limited by the drought and increasing urban density, it has become difficult to find access to both healthy, sustainable, and affordable organic food and green spaces. Such access benefits the physiological and psychological well-being of our communities. Recognizing the benefits of community urban farms, our plan is to work within dense urban spaces to establish solar-powered, sustainable, community-based urban farms using a new water-wise conservation strategy in downtown Los Angeles without having to invest in real estate. We thus work with the urban environment as it presents itself to us.

The Tower Garden System is soil-less and uses 90% less water compared to soil based farming through its vertical aeroponic design. Plants thrive with purified pH controlled water and micro nutrients, providing a “beyond organic” farming technique. In partnership with LA Urban Farms, Union Church L.A., and Union Rescue Mission, GIVE plans to install twenty vertical tower planters on the South side of Union Church (see layout), located two blocks from Skid Row.

In an effort to help homeless individuals secure needed jobs and provide fulfilling and healthy physical activities for seniors living in Little Tokyo, GIVE will train local seniors and job-ready former Skidrow residents through Union Rescue Missions’ Job Development Program in the maintenance and care of the Tower Gardens. While the project is focused on outreaching to former Skidrow residents and seniors, the program and space will be open to all Little Tokyo residents to benefit community life and health of the whole neighborhood.

In the first year, the sustainable, organic food grown will be donated to Union Rescue Mission and other homeless shelters, as well as the students and their families who grew them. The long-term goal is to train and develop an urban farmers market network where urban farmers will be able to receive micro-loans to start their own businesses, and sell their produce at local farmers markets and to restaurants.

Please explain how you will evaluate your work.


We will evaluate the success of our program based on how many urban farmers we graduate from our 6-week course and how many students are able to secure jobs after they graduate.

How can the LA2050 community and other stakeholders help your proposal succeed? (check all that apply)

Money (financial capital)

Volunteers/staff (human capital)

Publicity/awareness (social capital)

Infrastructure (building/space/vehicles, etc.)


Technical infrastructure (computers, etc.)

Community outreach

Network/relationship support

Quality improvement research

Other (please specify below):

1 Pink talk bubble tail c96b4a07ef1417e25d0bcf5c4cba4766b8bbf0382f07677990a9d5577885d4d7

this is absolutely wonderful im from phelps, Kentucky where there are many households below the self sufficiency index, although there are plenty of homeless people here they are just not actually laying on the street here the homeless usually stay with family member or friends . or in the mountains the jobs are limited Pike county, ky is/was a booming coal county until Obama , this could be the answer to a lot of prayers to the people of L.A. . I hope this program make a huge difference in the lives of the less fortunate.

by susie194
5 months ago

Pink ribbon award box icon 45b87e779c93f5099a48378c2aadc0fcd51184974daecf76e3f5c50034ea21fb
Award topvotedidea 5a5ae14e3d56a10363ea2a398cece46cf4df891213cbe68677c19d8903a1932a
Circle 1 inactive e7784182a1bd5eace578987db27fc19ec6337f418c48c6c8732605b9043d50d0 Step1 title submission inactive cde083e53089b973e7c9dc80a44a038c1ce4cf3b2650aeb5549157d1ed58a2d9

Submission Began
Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Submission Ended
Tuesday, October 06, 2015
at 07:00 PM UTC

Circle 2 inactive 74a43088831beb43fdbd7591ef5d50a5a7a26ff92c9e8ed489782459fa31a8d9 Step2 title voting inactive 96be722f53c417edddb5742ba9a6dc2fd403f7e4f6c19dbe883d50d20d93689d

Voting Began
Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Voting Ended
Tuesday, November 03, 2015
at 08:00 PM UTC

Circle 3 83da7a9432aeea960e1a9e9ee93e7ea1221af6c8f42b27964f2e9999d94b2b8d Step3 title 3d9e2a65d6ea1ad301f8fc607f5f828bd96362932c71d81c0da5b1fd964422b0

Winner Announced
Tuesday, December 08, 2015